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Life Coach Versus Executive Coach

One of the most commonly asked questions by business leaders is, what is the difference between life and executive coaching? The two coaching services have numerous differences, but take different approaches. Many coaching professionals also have a certified executive coach certification as part of their credentials.

In most cases, the best way to understand the two types of coaching is to start by defining the kind of coaching you need.

Evaluating the Different Types of Coaching

The most obvious difference between a life coach and an executive coach can be seen by looking at the areas they focus on. While, at the most basic level, both concentrate on improving different aspects of people’s lives, there are differences.

When you dig a little deeper, you will find that an executive coach primarily looks at a person’s professional life. They do this by focusing on specific attributes such as one’s leadership skills, stress management capabilities, and how their actions can affect their employees or staff members. Managers can also learn these skills and how to be an effective coach in the workplace

On the other hand, a life coach’s duties tend to revolve around one’s personal life. A life coach focuses on improving relationships, personal objectives and goals, and barriers to living happily.

When you carefully look at these types of coaching, you will find they involve different processes and are enlisted in very different situations. For instance, when you look at life coaches, they tend to take on individual clients; in contrast, executive coaches are more likely to offer their services to businesses and corporate entities where they can assist their leaders in boosting their performance levels.

Differences Between a Life Coach and an Executive Coach

Although all forms of coaching share certain similarities, such as focusing on active listening abilities and self-awareness, there are some technical skills that executive coaches often use but life coaches don’t. This is something that is also true when looking at what a success coach is

In most cases, executive coaches help corporate leaders improve their leadership styles–this gives them a clear understanding of how a leader is perceived when they carry out their duties. Coaches will conduct in-depth interviews with a client’s staff members or coworkers or use various scientific analysis techniques (such as personality assessments) to get the desired results.

Another important difference is that while life coaching tends to be all about working with an individual, executive coaching might start with one manager or leader and eventually move on to teams and groups. 

Executive coaching is all about the person being trained and how they can achieve their organization’s overall goals and objectives. To measure the success of executive coaching, a baseline will be set before the process of coaching starts; with life coaching, the client defines their personal goals and objectives.

The Similarities

Even though there are clear differences between life and executive coaches, many experts believe that such distinctions are often less defined when put into practice. For instance, although executive coaching tends to focus more on leadership skills and improved workplace performance, many professionals in the industry still believe that improving these areas requires a certain level of introspection that can be derived from one’s personal life.

When it comes down to it, both methods of coaching revolve around making individuals better at what they do and how they do it. Additionally, many people find it difficult to separate their work and personal lives. If a leader is dealing with problems managing a new team, those problems could stem from challenges they could be facing in their personal life—and vice-versa.

This is why, when executive coaches are working with an individual on their goals and objectives, the process gradually extends to the leader’s personal life. To be effective, coaches need to know who they are dealing with personally and professionally if they want to tap into their full potential.

Final Thoughts

In the most basic terms, life and executive coaching practices are about helping people thrive and realize their full potential. The two coaching styles will always have more similarities than differences, especially when applied to real-world situations.

Certified NLP Coach

Program Description: The Certified NLP Coach program allows you to incorporate very powerful NLP techniques you’re your day-to-day coaching practice.

ICF Training Hours: 65

Duration: 25-weeks

Schedule: One 2-hour class per week

Includes certificate: Yes

Certified Organizational Development Coach

Program Description:

The Certified Organizational Development Coach program is an exclusive and very unique program, designed for coaches who wish to coach entire organizations with their Organizational Development and Change Management goals. This program provides you with 65 ICF training hours - more than enough for the ACC credential. Over a series of 25 weekly lectures, it prepares you to deal with volatile group dynamics across entire organizations. Topics including OD interventions, Team Engagement, Buyer Behavior of internal customers, The Tripod of Success, Ensuring Sustainability, Performance-Retention correlation, Strategies to influence behavior - and many more - are covered in detail.

Coaches are introduced to the ARCS Model, as well as to the Organizational Culture Audit Toolkit. Employee motivation, satisfaction, and productivity are discussed, as well as their impact on the performance of the organization as a whole. Students are introduced to various Change Management models including Lewin's Planned Change model, the ADKAR Change Management model, and Kotter's 8 steps of Change Management. Resistance to change and its manifestation are discussed, as is Behavior Modification.

Upon completing this program, Certified Organizational Development Coaches will have all the tools they need to affect positive transformation within organizations, and will be able to coach teams and personnel at all levels - including initiators, decision makers, influencers, and intervention implementers.

In addition to coaches who are launching their own Corporate Coaching practices, this is an essential program for HR professionals, Training and Development Professionals, Managers, and Corporate Leaders who wish to implement internal policies and OD processes to guide their companies and people through ongoing change.

ICF Training Hours: 65

Duration: 25-weeks

Schedule: One 2-hour class per week

Includes certificate: Yes

Certified Executive Coach

Program Description

The Certified Executive Coach program has been designed for coaches who wish to coach managers, executives, and corporate leaders. The goal of this program is to cultivate a deep understanding of how the executive coaching process works as well as some of the challenges that come up in executive coaching conversations.

This program has been approved by the International Coaching Federation for 32 hours, and it comprises of 12 live, instructor-led, fully interactive virtual classes offered over zoom. These classes cover various aspects of executive coaching including, but not limited to Effective Collaboration, Performance Management, Upskilling, Conflict Management, Effective Collaboration, Developing Team Members, and many more.

This program has a very unique, hands-on, experiential structure. Classes are focused on active participation by students through real life Coaching Challenges and discussions of real life executive coaching situations.

ICF Training Hours: 32

Duration: 12-weeks

Schedule: One 2-hour class per week

Includes certificate: Yes

Certified Life Coach

Program Description:

The Certified life Coach program is an essential program for anyone considering coaching as a profession. The goal of this program is to create a deep understanding of the coaching process, along with how and why it is effective in catalyzing shifts in the mindset to create positive, sustainable transformation.

The training is based on the ICF’s core coaching competencies. It focuses on skills that lead to effective coaching conversations and that are required to build a successful coaching business. It evokes awareness about how identity, thoughts, and feelings determine mindset; and why a change in Think Feel Do impacts the achievement of goals though a change in this mindset.

This program is approved by the International Coaching Federation for 95 hours and comprises 24 live, instructor led, fully interactive virtual sessions offered over Zoom. These lectures cover all aspects of coaching – topics such as Human Emotions and the Brain, Coaching through Emotional Intelligence, The Belief System, Coaching Process and Structure, Deep Listening, Setting Worthy Goals, Asking Insightful Questions, Addressing Client Resistance, Coaching Groups, The Business of Coaching, and many more. These are complemented with a library of reading and reference material, coaching challenges based on various real-life coaching situations, extensive hands-on coaching practice, and assignments designed to trigger reflection on and mastery of coaching skills.

ICF Training Hours: 95

Duration: 24-weeks

Schedule: One 2-hour class per week

Includes certificate: Yes

Class Schedule
ProgramStart DateClass TimesClass Schedule
Certified Life CoachMonday, July 22nd10:30am ET
3:00pm ET
8:00pm ET
Once a week, 2-hours, for 24-weeks
Certified Organizational Development CoachTueday, July 23rd10:30am ET
3:00pm ET
8:00pm ET
Once a week, 2-hours, for 25-weeks
Certified Executive CoachWednesday, July 24th10:30am ET
3:00pm ET
8:00pm ET
Once a week, 2-hours, for 12-weeks
Certified NLP CoachThursday, July 25th10:30am ET
3:00pm ET
8:00pm ET
Once a week, 2-hours, for 25-weeks
Level 1/2 - ACC/PCC
Mentoring
Friday, August 9th10:30am ET (FULL)
3:00pm ET
8:00pm ET
Once a week, 1-hour
for 6-sessions PLUS 4 one-on-
one sessions with mentor
Level 1/2 - ACC/PCC
Mentoring
Friday, September 27th10:30am ETOnce a week, 1-hour
for 6-sessions PLUS 4 one-on-
one sessions with mentor